Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Cracks in Earthquake-prone Buildings Bill

Is the Earthquake-prone Buildings Bill, a sequel to Psychoactive Substances?

The potential dragnet of the Building (Earthquake-prone Buildings) Amendment Bill is so vast, both Federated Farmers and Rural Women NZ believe it could become a sequel to the Psychoactive Substances Bill, recently amended by Parliament due to public concerns.

“There’s a rainbow coalition of submitters telling Parliament that the Building (Earthquake-prone Buildings) Amendment Bill needs reworking,” says Anders Crofoot, Federated Farmers building spokesperson.

“The proposed Bill requires all councils to assess buildings and requires owners to demolish or strengthen any earthquake-prone structures within 15 years.

“To us and many submitters, the cure for earthquake-prone buildings could destroy our provincial towns in order to save them.

“While seismic strengthening in high-rise Wellington and Auckland makes sense, that urban profile isn’t Masterton or Gore. While there are earthquake risks they’re not exactly the same,” Mr Crofoot added.

Rural Women NZ was likewise concerned by the Bill’s potential effect.

“Rural Women NZ endorses Federated Farmers submission,” says Noeline Holt, its Executive Director.

“Our provincial centres cannot match the massive square metre rents found in Newmarket or on Lambton Quay yet the seismic cost is the same.

“From looking at the submissions, we hope the Select Committee will recommend the Bill be amended to consider its real economic and social implications, as well as focussing on those things that’ll make a real impact on safety,” Ms Holt said

Federated Farmers agrees with Local Government New Zealand’s submission and wants the Bill to prioritise those communities at the greatest risk.

“Many of the safety objectives can be achieved by targeting buildings and building parts most likely to fail in earthquake prone areas. Even then, low rise buildings, so typical in our provincial towns do not seem to suffer from catastrophic failure,” Mr Crofoot continued.

“In other parts of the country, a focus on parapets, verandas and removing at risk items could greatly boost safety at the least social and financial cost.

“It is not as if rural and provincial New Zealand has not experienced earthquakes. Where I farm, Castlepoint, in Wararapa, we had a 6.2 quake only in 20 January but the damage related mostly to wine.

“Need I mention the Seddon, Darfield, Gisborne or Edgecumbe quakes? If the Bill proceeds unchanged we could see thriving towns turned into ghost towns.
“If the costs far exceed any sensible return building owners may board up or demolish. While that aids freedom squatters and clandestine labs it will not benefit those of us who live there.

“It is hard to disagree with the Property Council of New Zealand, which believes the Bill could work, but only if earthquake strengthening is made tax deductible, qualifying for depreciation.

“Seismic work does not add a cent to the value of a building, it only returns the building to the value it once had,” Mr Crofoot concluded.

Federated Farmers submission can be read here.

Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Patience: Drive Safe

Be patient before passing is the AA's message for drivers this Labour weekend.

"People taking crazy risks to get past other vehicles is one of the most dangerous things on the road,” says AA spokesperson Dylan Thomsen.

“The weather is looking good for the long weekend so the roads will be busy. Unfortunately, that also increases the chances of people getting frustrated and trying a risky passing manoeuvre. When they get past, there will probably be more traffic up ahead anyway so it won’t get people there faster.” More>>

 
 

Parliament Today:

Employment Relations Bill: Govt Strains To Get Tea Break Law Through

The Government has been left with egg on its face - failing to get its much-vaunted, but hugely unpopular, meal break law passed in the first week of its new term, Labour spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says. More>>

ALSO:

Guns: Police Association Call To Arm Police Full Time

"The new minister gave his view, that Police do not need to be armed, while standing on the forecourt of parliament. The dark irony was that the interview followed immediately after breaking news of a gunman running amok in the Canadian parliament in Ottawa..." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Tokenism Of New Zealand's Role Against Islamic State

Our contribution against IS will be to send SAS forces to train the Iraqis? That’s like offering trainers to General Custer just as the 7th cavalry reached the Little Big Horn. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Shell And Todd Caught Drilling Without Approval

Multi-national oil company Shell’s New Zealand arm and local energy giant Todd Energy have breached the new law governing New Zealand’s Exclusive Economic Zone, the Environmental Protection Authority says in an Oct. 10 document released by the Green Party. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Pharmac, Gough Whitlam And Sleater-Kinney

We’re not at the outset of these negotiations. The outset was six years ago, and negotiators were hoping to have some sort of ‘framework’ deal finished in time for the APEC meeting in a few weeks’ time. These ‘extreme’ positions are what we’ve reached near the intended end of the negotiations… More>>

ALSO:

PM Of Many Hats: Questions, No Answers On Whale Oil

Dr RUSSEL NORMAN (Co-Leader – Green) to the Prime Minister: How many times since November 2008 has he spoken with blogger Cameron Slater on the phone and how many times, if any, has he texted him?
Rt Hon JOHN KEY (Prime Minister): None in my capacity as Prime Minister. More>>

ALSO:

Aussie Investigation Dropped: Call On Minister McCully To Pursue The Case Of Balibo Five

West Papua Action is deeply concerned at the lack of any clear outcome from the Australian Federal Police inquiry into the 1975 deaths of the ‘Balibo Five’ including NZ journalist Gary Cunningham. More>>

ALSO:

'Feed The Kids' Bill: Metiria Turei To Lead Fight On Feeding Hungry Children

Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei is urging all political parties to support the Feed the Kids Bill which she inherited today from Mana leader Hone Harawira. More>>

ALSO:

Parliament Today: State Opening Of Parliament

The House sat at 10.30am on Tuesday before MPs were summoned to hear the Speech from the Throne in the Legislative Council Chamber. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news